I've owned the SRH1540 for over a year or so by now. I had gotten them for free (through some complicated school government programme that I'm not going to explain here), so I am very grateful to have such a great headphone, but I think my efforts to "fix" or just love these headphones haven't really worked. I like them, but don't choose them over my other headphones like my AT ATH-AD700 and E-MU Teak. For me, the two primary areas where the SRH1540 doesn't work for me lie in the mid-bass and the upper mids. The mid-bass is just too humped for me, and while I can see how it can make for a relaxing yet fun listen, I didn't like it very much for more bassy tracks. The uneven/ringing in the upper mids lends texture and vibrance to vocals, but can quickly get irritating over longer listening sessions at moderate to higher volumes. K-pop was particularly abbrasive with the SRH1540 stock, and I found myself dismayed by the over-bearing mid-bass and the splashy vocals ruining that genre in many instances. I sought to fix these issues by modding. First, I stuffed the insides of the cups with roughly cut/torn pieces of foam from a thin sheet that I got from a small local upholstry business. Then, I swapped the pads to the Brainwavz flat oval pleather pads. Mid-bass was flattened, much to my delight, and the good sub-bass extension can be more readily felt. The mod, however, didn't really fix the upper mid splashyness, and made the overall signature more balanced (aka brighter than stock) as a result. While better suited to my preferences, the SRH1540 then had the problem of having a vaguely similar sound signature to my E-MU Teak and wood modded M40x, and both those headphones didn't feature that same upper mid harshness. So I'd use those over the modded SRH1540 in a pinch. The SRH1540 does have several strengths, to its credit. With a pilot pad, the SRH1540 can be extremely comfortable, and of course it has that excellent isolation. And, for people who want it / can live with it, the SRH1540 is great for listening at lower volumes, since it retains bass punch and clarity because of the humped mid-bass and upper mid spike. Also, as many have pointed out, the SRH1540 has a nice rendition of spatial depth and imaging for a close headphone; apart from the ever-present mid-bass, the upper frequencies especially have a soothing sense of space. I think Lachlan was on to something when he said the SRH1540 are extremely under-rated in his Elier video. They have many good qualities: they come with generous accessories, are comfy (especially with a pilot pad to prevent hot spots), are built very well, are relatively easy to mod, and are practical in many ways. But for me, the sound signature just didn't do it, being too unbalanced for my taste and frankly distracting, so I never find myself choosing it over my other gear. Nowadays, I think there are better values than the SRH1540 in the closed department, the Audio-Technica A1000Z coming to mind. However, The A1000Z, while sounding more balanced and being technically superior imo, does not have a detachable cable, comes with nada in terms of accessories, and is definitely not the same kind of subtle/practical that the SRH1540 is. This is not to mention the various niche needs the SRH1540 fulfils, like its great use case at lower volumes for people extremely concerned about hearing damage (and rightly so). The SRH1540 also has a mid-bass hump many people on this thread seem to enjoy, and I can see why, especially for acoustic, jazz, and other less bassy genres. Being a long-term user of the SRH1540, I would definitely hesitate to recommend it to people right away, but I think for the right group of people, it can make some very, very happy.